Sunday, 14 June 2015

The Rain on Mayne is mainly on the Wane

I wait in vain for rain on Mayne. We islanders are not permitted to use our community water for the garden, so I have rigged up a number of 55-gallon barrels, eight in all, beneath the gutters, connected by flexipipe to every spout I can find. And I sit and wait for the next shower, ready to redirect the flexipipe, or pump water from one barrel to another, all the water eventually to flow to my parched garden.

I watch the weather forecast every day. Sometimes it shows rain about a week ahead, but when the day arrives the rain is always falling somewhere else. I even have an ironic acronym for this phenomenon: ARDOM, Another Rainy Day on Mayne, that is, one of those days when rain is forecast but doesn’t fall.

Apparently, the average water consumption in Canada is 60-70 gallons per person per day. How much of that water is wasted! But I am saving every drop for the garden: bathwater for the vegetables, washing-up water for the plants, rinsing-water for the tomatoes on the deck. And if I sometimes rinse a little too liberally, I compensate by not flushing the toilet. One non-flushing of the toilet is equivalent to one filling of the watering can.

I have added a couplet to the old Australian water-saving, selective-flushing ditty:

If it’s yellow, 
Let it mellow.
If it’s brown, 
Flush it down.

And even then, just bide your time,
Don’t flush it down unless it’s prime!

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